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Connectivity in regional Australia must improve

1 June 2024

Australia’s Universal Service Obligation (USO), a long-standing policy ensuring basic phone services for all, is outdated and reliant on ageing copper infrastructure. Telstra, while committed to upholding the USO, is urging the government to modernise the policy by adopting newer technologies.

In a recent post, Telstra highlighted the reliance of the standard telephone service (STS) on obsolete copper and radio technology in some areas. Loretta Willaton, Telstra’s regional executive, described it as a “dinosaur” compared to modern alternatives. The outdated technology poses challenges, with some components no longer manufactured, forcing Telstra to rely on recycled and refurbished parts.

Copper’s shortcomings for modern networking are well-known. It is expensive to maintain, prone to outages, and offers inferior service quality compared to 4G, fibre (via VOIP), or satellite networks.

Telstra’s call for modernisation aligns with the growing need for reliable and efficient communication services across Australia, particularly in regional areas. Updating the USO would not only improve service quality but also ensure the sustainability of essential communication infrastructure for the future.

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Source: Gizmodo

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